9to5: The Story of a Movement Documentary Movie Review

Every social movement starts with a small step toward change.

The 2021 Netflix documentary, 9to5: The Story of a Movement is the real-life 9 to 5. In Boston in the 1970s, female office workers were second-class employees. Stuck in an administrative (aka the secretary) role, they were blocked from climbing the professional ladder due to their gender. Banding together, they raised their voice and fought for better pay, better opportunity, and against sexual harassment.

I loved it. My generation of women stands on the figurative shoulders of these women. Without them, we would still be making coffee and answering the phone for our male bosses. What was also apparent is that though it’s been fifty-odd years, the issues they experienced then are still being wrestled with now.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely.

9to5: The Story of a Movement is available for streaming on Netflix.

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9 to 5- Still Relevant

This past weekend, I saw 9 to 5. It was in movie theaters 34 years ago and I don’t know why I haven’t seen this movie¬†before, I am glad I did.

The movie, for those who have not seen it, is a buddy workplace revenge comedy about three female employees who take revenge on a hated male boss. Judy Bernly (Jane Fonda) is recently divorced and in the workplace for the first time in her adult life. Violet Newstead (Lilly Tomlin) is a veteran, working at the company for 12 years and watching the men rise in professional status while she is kept in the same position. Doralee Rhodes (Dolly Parton) is the personal secretary of the boss, Franklin M Hart Jr (Dabney Coleman). He is constantly hitting on her, admiring her looks, and spreading a rumor that she is his mistress.

This movie is so incredibly funny, the satire is right on target.

But there is also a truth in this movie.  34 years later, the issues that these characters are dealing with are still relevant today. Equal pay for equal work, having a flexible work schedule or daycare for working parents, creating a positive working environment, and giving both male and female employees equal opportunities to rise professionally.

This movie still stands the test of time, even after a generation.

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